The king of Golf, Arnold Palmer has died at the age of 87 years. He died Sunday night in a Pittsburgh hospital awaiting heart surgery, said according to a statement from his company.
Palmer, thanks to a special style of Golf, has helped take the sport from the country club to the masses. He won more than 90 tournaments in Golf, including the Masters, the U.S. open in 1960 and the British Open in 1961 and 1962, Palmer was the first person who earned $ 1 million playing Golf.
He and two of his rival the "Big three" - Gary Player and Jack Nicklaus helped make the sport all over the world in the 1960-ies, capitalizing on the ever-growing reach of television. Golf turned into a made-for-TV event, and along with it came massive sponsors and prize money.
"He raised his game from one level to a higher level, almost by itself," writes Niklaus in a statement.
"Arnold always had my back and I his. We were always next to each other. This has not changed. He was the king of our sport and always will be." After he learned to play Golf at the age of 4 years, Palmer never stopped playing.
GQ named him one of "50 most stylish men of the last 50 years" and Esquire zanel it to the list of "the 75 best dressed men of all time." Palmer even had a drink named after him lemonade and iced tea, which he brewed to take on the Golf course in the thermos.
Palmer started his professional career in 1954 after winning the Golf Association Amateur USA.
Two years later he signed a contract with mark McCormack, who founded International Management Group (IMG). Later, McCormack helped Palmer, who was a very popular star. Palmer retired from competitive Golf in 2006, but remained an active sportsman. Palmer received the Presidential medal of freedom in 2004 and the Gold medal of the Congress in 2012.
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